Thursday night ride. Toss was bumming his OAP mates and Clarkey's bike was in bits, so just Wors, Weest and me. The last few days have been glorious sunshine, and if Lee Quarry was anything to go by on Sunday, then the going promised to be excellent. We weren't disappointed. The plan was to do the same run that me and Wors did last week, which is just the Signature ride for Rivi, only missing the Kennels run. However, when we got to Weesters, Sarah was working a little later than advertised and he rather predictably had bike problems. Looks liked his BB was in the process of starting to seize up.
Up the hill to Horrocks Fold, Coal pit to the gate, where we met a couple of fell runners coming down from the moor. I noticed that thier car had a bike in it, and we chatted about the route we were taking. The lads said that the ground was lovely and dry.
Only problem with Coal Pit path is that if you are ascending at night time, the setting sun in plumb in your face all the way up. Still, no matter, I was just pleased it was in the sky, even if it was sinking fast. The path has dried out so quick it amazed me. NO mud resistance at all and we were flying up the track. Up to the summit of Winter Hill, I was gagging to get on the shoulder singletrack. I love this bit of winding singletrack, up on the summit plateaux before the drop. Hit it hard and as fast as you dare it really rewards you with some great flow. The ground was so grippy that we flew along it and then hit the chute. Huge clumps of earth and grass have fallen into the top of the chute making it even more of a challenge to get down. When we reached the bottom, the Sun was just starting to sink over the Irish Sea.... a huge red ball, dunno if it had something to do with the ash from the Icelandic Volcano, but it was stunning. My phone pic does not do it justice.
From Belmont Road, we decided to fly over to the Pike and as the two lads had decided they were off to the pub after the ride, we binned the Ice Cream Run and just went up the Pike. At the top I had an urge to have a go at the steps. So, saddle dropped off I set watched by the two lads. Going well till the sharp corner which I took way too tight and ended up dabbing. Re composed myself and carried on, the steps get steeper the further down but your committed by then. At the bottom, I stopped and watched Wors coming down. He made it look very easy, but Weester bottled it the big homo. Was a great feeling getting down them, not really too difficult but it is a right head fuck.
Up the kennels and along to the top of San Marino. I set off first and apparently at the 1st boggy bit Wors nearly rear ended me and ended up in the Salad. The hill was in PRISTINE condition and I was flying. Jumping off every lip and drop, nailing every rock garden and hammering the pedals at every opportunity, it was just flowing so well until the zig zag when I flew over a pretty sizeable rock lip and there was a bang and the front flatted straight away. Real arse twitching moment but managed to pull up OK. Changed the tube and the lads kindly waited for me even though it was fucking freezing. I told them to get off and wait for me at the bottom, but when I flipped the bike over, I realized that I had blown both the front AND the rear :(. No more tubes in my pack to had to walk / run / jog down to the forest and ponce another tube from the guys.
Straight home and the end of a super fast night ride that had everything I love about biking in it. Only beer was missing for me at least. The other lads ended the evening in the Brewhouse.
Looking forward to Sunday now, praying the weather holds.